To help you organize and contain your clutter. Sharing tips with you.
I am from Oklahoma. Now living the dream in Arizona. I'm a sassy, creative and outspoken southern gal. I believe that if you can read you can go anywhere. One of my favorite sayings is "If you knew you could not fail what would you do?" I enjoy helping other people. My friends know that I’m the queen of useless trivial knowledge and I will not hesitate to use it.
OK so here is the deal. You don’t have to keep anything that you don’t need, like, or want.
Just because your grandmother’s sister made it you don’t have to keep it. If it is not your style you don’t have to keep it. (Unless your employer requires you to)
If your long gone in-law was a hobby carver or a paint by number artist and not very good you don’t have to keep their works of art.
It is not disrespectful or disgracing their memory. Keep the memory and let go of the object.
I can’t tell you how many times I hear clients say but my father-in-law made this and my husband kept it so now that he has passed I have to keep it.
No, you don’t.
You are not required to keep relics of someone else’s’ past. You never met this person; you don’t have to have their really bad paint by number painting of Elvis. Nor do you have to keep pictures of your prior spouse’s friends that you never met and have no idea who is in those pictures.
No one expects you to keep a museum of your husband’s past. It’s OK to let go of your mother-in-law’s collection of dolls that your husband hated and thought was creepy. You can get rid of them. Really it’s OK.
Zig Ziglar says, “no stinking thinking.”
I say, “Keep what you like and let go of the rest.”
Take what you want and leave the rest. This applies to your stuff. You can do it and you will feel better when you are done.
You come home from work; start dinner only to discover you don’t have any pasta.
OK plan B you can make what????? You can’t find anything. There are cans, boxes, bags and containers in a mish mash.
You are sure you bought some mussels. Great you can make mussels marinara. Where are they? You just have to find them; they should be in the freezer. Nope there are not any mussels. Lots of chicken, but you don’t have time to make chicken.
In a rush you order pizza instead and go to the grocery store after dinner, soccer and dance.
Budget and diet blown!
Tired, rushed and frazzled you go to the grocery store to buy food. But you don’t know what you have or what you need. You know you don’t have pasta. By the way last week you favorite store had pasta on sale.
I ask this because this has happened to all of us. But if you organize your pantry you can save money and time.
Time because you will be able to see at a glance what is running low and know what you have.
Money because if you know you are low on something you can purchase it on sale. Did you know grocery stores run sales on a cycle? They do. Soda is always on sale near a holiday in the summer months. Sugar is always on sale near thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter because of the holiday baking.
OK lets talk about organizing your pantry. Think about what you use.
If you will take a little bit of time now you can save time later. I reorganized my pantry in less than 1 hour.
One shelf for canned goods. Put like items together in a row try to put the newest cans in the rear. Boxes on another row and so on.
Also keep your cereals and other frequently used items in airtight clear containers to keep them fresh and to easily see when you are running low.
I have an Ikea cart that holds my potatoes and onions. When I am ready to cook I roll the cart over to the sink to wash and peel. Also, I don’t have to search the bottom of my pantry to find the lost rotten potato that is stinking up the place.
I also have a running shopping list. When I open the last jar of mayo I put mayo on the list. I can then watch for a sale and not run out.
Later this week is national clean out your refrigerator day. So you know what that means…
Empty the containers that are way in the back.
Toss out the takeout from 3 weeks ago. (You will thank me later.)
Do you have an almost empty bottle of mayo or Catalina dressing? Do you even like Catalina dressing? No? Well, why are you keeping the ½ ounce that is at the bottom of that bottle?
Do you have a beer that you have been saving for the Astro’s to win the world series? They did and that beer may not be as satisfying as the last game was. Ditto for any other expired food you have in there. Let it go.
Besides if you live in the USA, Thanksgiving is coming. You need room for all the food. The dressing, pumpkin pie and the turkey, oh my. You must make room for the goodies.
Now that you have tossed the science experiments that were growing in your refrigerator it’s time to clean all the shelves, wash the crisper drawers. Don’t forget to vacuum condenser coils and vacuum out under the refrigerator.
Again you are welcome! Now enjoy your nice clean refrigerator.
Do you have any Halloween decorations that are broken?
Halloween is over. All that is left is the candy and the decorations. Time to put them away and get out the Thanksgiving or fall decorations. But, did you discover your Halloween or Day of the Dead decorations has seen better days? Did you have to stuff your scarecrow? Is your pumpkin flat? This is s a great time to evaluate and eliminate the broken and unused decorations.
Anything you did not use you should let go of. If it is broken or unsafe that needs to go. Don’t let it be witchful thinking that you can’t be organized. You can and I am here to help. But there is no magic wand.
Of course now is a fabulous time to purchase your replacements ~ you know all remaining Halloween and Day of the Dead decorations are on sale.
Box them all up and put them away until next year.
Additionally, if you have candy you don’t want here in my area we have a program that is called Operation Gratitude. They send candy in care packages to military troops. There is most likely a program similar in your area.
By the way Halloween day at my house it will be in the upper 90’s so there will be some melted chocolate.. We don’t buy candy we like so I am not temped. LOL. Do you give out candy? What is your favorite candy? For me it is Dark Chocolate.
So do you have a budget? Do you know when you power bill is due? Does your significant other?
Yes ~no~ maybe? While for many couples money is a point of contention. Each of you needs to know what is going on with and where your money is going. You both need to know how to access to your online accounts and at the very least how much money is coming in and going out.
Are you one paycheck away from disaster? If you are then you need to put the brakes on and talk to someone.
There are so many ways to dig you out of a hole. Such as cut up your credit cards, use cash, use the envelope system, Dave Ramsey’s, Suze Orman, or any number of other systems that are out there. They are easy to find. I am sure you can find one that you can work with. There is even the suggestion to keep only one credit card but freeze it in a freezer bowl of water for EMERGENCIES. That way you have to thaw the card and by having it frozen limits your access. It’s really not a good idea microwave your credit card.
Everyone needs an emergency fund.
Note new shoes or a new outfit, going out to dinner or big TV is not an emergency.
An emergency is tires for your vehicle, car repair, hospital or dental emergency, job loss or home repair.
Have you thought about how you might buy a house?
Are you are looking for a house, will you buy in the city or country? How long will your commute be? Are you willing to do that? Do you have money for a down payment? Can you handle the mortgage payment, insurance, taxes and maintenance? When you become the homeowner you also become the super. Oh no the hot water is out? That is your problem. Leak in the roof. Yep ~ that repair is on you. By the way these repairs are not covered by your standard homeowners insurance. You can purchase a separate home warranty plan that will cover some of these repairs.
So maybe you are in the market for a new vehicle. Can you tell me how much your car insurance is?
If you are in the market for a new car would you check to see how much your insurance will cost on the new vehicle before you purchase it? Did you know that your automobile insurance does NOT cover repairs unless it was as the result of an accident? Not because you didn’t check the oil and you blew up the engine or your drivetrain just wore out. WHAT THE WHAT.
Yes ~ this is why you need an emergency fund.
Do you have children? Are you making a college savings plan? Do you want it help your kids go to college or do you think that if they do it all themselves they will be more serious? But can they? Have you thought of this before?
Have you got a plan for retirement? Do you have a date you would like to retire? Do you know the earlier you start saving for this the less money you have to put in? Right AMAZING. If you have not started saving, now is a good time.
If you do have a retirement date in mind will you be debt free on that date? If you have less money coming in you need less money going out.
What about where will you live? Does your house allow you to age in place? Is there are bedroom and bathroom on the main floor? Stairs are not your friend when you get older. Your knees will thank you.
Do you have a will? Even if you are young you need a will. If you are young parents you need this more than ever. You want to provide for your children. Who will become their guardian?
Are you single? Do you have a Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care? Lets say you are in an accident, you have a life threating injury and unable to communicate? Who speaks on your behalf? Who are they going to call?
Advanced Directive? Is a written statement of a person’s wishes regarding medical treatment, often including a living will, made to ensure those wishes are carried out should the person be unable to communicate them to a doctor.
No financial or legal advice is being give here. I only want to make you think. Organize your finances and get your financial plan started. Take advantage of National Financial Planning Month.
“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!” ~ Benjamin Franklin
So do you have a plan? I love you comments. Please share this with your friends and family.
What is the number one reason to get organized and simplify your life?
When you make an effort to get organized, you free your mind to focus on the things that invite joy and happiness into your life. Not only can you create more “Me time” when you clear out the clutter and simplify your life. You’ll free up more “We time” with the ones you love. It’s time to slow down, relax, and enjoy your beautiful home with your loving friends and family.
Are you ready to start. It’s not that hard.
Don’t ask what do I want to get rid of? Instead, Ask what do I want to keep?
There are 6 easy questions to ask yourself about your clutter.
1. Have I used the item in the last 12 months?
2. Do I already have one of these?
3. Do I love this?
4. If I saw this in a store today would I buy it again?
5. Is it in good condition?
6. Does this fit into my current lifestyle.
If you answered no to any of those questions then you should get rid of those things.
When you come back, we will talk about ways to do just that. Feel free to comment on the areas that create the most clutter in your life. Let’s find a way to make the most of your time.
This is a great dish for summer or a picnic as it is very easy to transport. The recipe serves about 4, but could be easily doubled. Best of all, it is made ahead and ready to go at meal time. And of course, it is naturally gluten free. As always, if you have to […]
Here are a few things to keep the kids entertained and hopefully avoid the dreaded, “Are we there yet” questions .
Try these awesome ways to get the kids involved.
I’m of my mom friends said, she made a travel binder for her then 6 yr old last summer. They drove to Florida. She had maps printed with their route highlighted every day. He loved being able to follow along. And then she printed out free road trip games from online. Put them in sheet protectors so we used dry erase markers on them. (License plate game, bingo, tic tac toe, battle ship, etc).I
Make busy bags
Busy bags and activities are a great way to keep kids unplugged, but for a change of pace, try these games I remember from my own childhood that require zero supplies.
Count the cows- this game is simple. Count the cows in the fields on your side of the road. If you pass a graveyard, your cows die and you have to start over. You can end the game either when one person gets to a certain number of cows, when you get to your destination, or when you get tired of playing.
Abc game- take turns finding letters on road signs on your side of the road. You must go in order.
Quaker Meeting (aka the quiet game) – I’m not sure if my mom made this up to get a little peace- but the object of the game is to see who can stay quiet the longest.
Rhyming- Sometimes we just take turns rhyming and see how many we can come up with in a row. Or make up new silly lyrics to our favorite songs.
Also don’t skimp on Snacks, Water and more Snacks!
We always make sure to stock up on some of our favorite snacks. Don’t forget to take plenty of water. This is some that we find travel travel well: string cheese, rice cakes, pretzels, bagels, sandwiches, carrots, apple slices, bananas, crackers with cheese or nut butter, granola bars, cookies, raisins, dry cereal, jerky, and pop corn snacks.
Remember to relax and enjoy the journey. Barf happens! So be prepared. Gallon zip lock veggies and disinfecting wipes are strongly suggested.
Maintain your chill and be flexable!
If you are on the fence about taking a vacation let me say, GO! They are your vacation days. Take them. Spend time with your family. Unplug and go. There are only so many summers when your kids will be little. They are growing up and you need to make memories.
So go make memories. Good or bad they will be the things you will talk about for years and years to come.
Your kids are growing up before your eyes. You only get 18 summers with them before they go off on their own. (Maybe) Time is SHORT!!!!
The thing I want to say to you is to LET THAT STUFF GO! Today we are well and rocking our lives along but what if you got news that in 20 days you live would change drastically! Your loved one might be diagnosed with a terminal disease or you might be in a fatal automobile accident. You never know when or of your grand plans will be recalculated and changed in a moment.
I tell you to be organized because you have better things to do than search for stuff. Play with your kids when they are young, enjoy your grandkids, or walk the dog. Spend time with your family, your spouse, your friends. You don’t have a guarantee. Don’t wait to do it now.
Cook dinner and use your good china or don’t. In our house, the good china is Chinet® disposable plates. Why? Because we don’t want to spend time washing dishes when the family is all together.
If you are holding on the stuff. Why? Let it go. Don’t sacrifice space that you need for stuff you don’t.
You hear the news every day of how lives are changed in an instant but you think that is sad but still, it’s not you, or it’s not your family. It might be. I want you all to stop today and think about this post.
Go out and have a good day! Smile at a stranger and be nice.